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August 2001 - Nr. 8


The Editor
The Last Mohican
Antje berichtet
Klaus Hofer reports...
Hier O.K. Berlin!
Views & Reviews
Fred Wagner
Down On The Town
Seniors at CNE
Dick reports...
Sybille reports
Ham Se det jehört?
Join us...
50 Years...
Stem Cell Imports
Folk Festival Fun
From Love Parade...
Goethe Papers
Royal Tomb

Ethics Council Debates 
Stem Cell Imports

  TWIG - Germany’s new national ethics council has started its deliberations on whether scientists in the Federal Republic should be allowed to import embryonic stem from other countries. Speaking with the press in Berlin Monday (July 9), council chairman Spiros Simitis stressed that the moral issues involved in biology today need to be resolved on more than just the national level. Established by Chancellor Gerhard Schröder in early June, the ethics council is composed of scientists, religious leaders, and representatives of human rights organizations. Its task is to recommend policy, and it cannot make binding decisions independently.

Germany’s embryo protection law forbids the production of human embryonic stem cells, but the law does not cover the importation of stem cells from other countries. Government authorities recently learned that the universities of Lübeck and Cologne have both received shipments of human stem cells from the United States for use in medical research. One of these shipments was ordered by cardiologist Wolfgang Franz, now at the University of Munich. His project - on hold until its legal status is clarified - involves the development of heart muscles cells.

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